Investors are anticipating another quarter of weak earnings from Gulf telcos, according to research from Securities & Investment Co (SICO) in Bahrain.
The research indicates that former monopolies will again be the hardest hit, with growth in data revenues insufficient to offset declines in voice revenues, Reuters reported.
Etisalat's fourth-quarter profit could fall by 11.4%, in what would be its seventh decline in eight quarters, the report added.
Bahraini incumbent Batelco also looks set to suffer, heading for its seventh straight quarter of falling profit, the research indicates.
"We're coming to the point where most telecom operators can only really hope for a single-digit growth," said Nishit Lakhotia, telecoms analyst at Securities & Investment Co (SICO) in Bahrain.